Professor Niall Ferguson (US)

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Economic Historian

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Combining appointments at Oxford, Stanford and Harvard, Niall is seen as the world’s most influential economic historian. He suggests what we can learn from the past about the vexed relationship between finance and politics, the strengths and limitations of global power – and the case for radical institutional reforms. In speeches he also considers the scramble for commodities, how large companies rise and fall and whether or not this is the Chinese century.


Niall Ferguson is one of the world's most influential economic historians. He is the author of several acclaimed books, including The Cash Nexus: Money and Power in the Modern World, and The War of the World: Twentieth Century Conflict and the Descent of the West. The last offers a groundbreaking examination of empire and the revival of the East.

Controversial, expansive and eloquent, Ferguson has been labelled ‘the most talented British historian of his generation’; but the themes he explores have urgent relevance to the present. He explores politics and globalisation in the age of Trump, questions whether we can bounce back from economic stagnation, and examines how great institutions decay and big companies fall.

In the wake of the financial crisis, Ferguson’s presentations argued the case for radical institutional reforms. He advocates Limited Purpose Banking, restricting the banks to traditional low-risk activities and creating mutual funds with a 100% capital requirement.

Niall is the founder and Managing Director of Greenmantle LLC, a Cambridge-based advisory firm. He has served simultaneously as Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and Professor of History at Harvard University. He has also held positions at the LSE and advised Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign.

A prolific commentator for the American and British press (as well as an experienced radio and television presenter), his work regularly appears in the Sunday Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine. He has published over a dozen books to date, including Empire, Civilization: The West and the Rest and The Ascent of Money, which he made into an Emmy-winning series for PBS.

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